By Danielle Merrill
Photo: Livestream of Public Safety Committee Meeting
Mayor Randall Woodfin asked the public safety committee to hold off on voting for a new police software contract during Tuesday’s committee meeting.
“There’s been a lot of discussion on social media today regarding a Motorola contract we have, and specifically around the area of facial recognition,” Councilman Hunter Williams said.
The new software proposal has been criticized from groups such as Black Lives Matter and People’s Budget Birmingham due to the fact that it could be used to target minority communities, according to CBS 42.
“In my left hand, it is important that we stick to the values of being efficient and effective, that we’re transparent, and we hold our officers accountable for how they engage the community,” Woodfin said,”and in my right hand, I think it’s important that we provide the necessary tools to be in a position to do the following things I just described.”
Woodfin said laptops used in investigative settings as well as patrol-related technology such as updated tasers and body cams need to be updated in order to strike a balance between being efficient and effective.
“One of the things that people are speaking to is facial recognition,” Woodfin said, “I want to be explicit to you as it relates to this contract that’s before you, it does not do anything towards facial recognition, and I just want to state that for the record.”.
BriefCam would ultimately take Birmingham’s ShotSpotter technology, camera systems and police body cameras and integrate them into one screen by using all of the data in one interface, according to a quote from Williams from CBS 42.
“That being the case, there’s a bridge here, and I think that this is the most important part I want to speak to you all about. The bridge is trust. I think in the age we’re living in now, I think what’s really important between both is that we build trust,” Woodfin said.
- Liquor licenses for 19th Street Market, Blaze Hookah Lounge, Roebuck Golf Course and Neon Moon
- a renewal agreement for software for the Birmingham Police Department’s forensic department
- a maintenance agreement for evidence tracking software for the Birmingham Police Department
- a donation of personal protective equipment to the Yerkwood Fire Department